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Chasing Babies... Growing in Grace: A Teddy Bear Baby Shower

Sunday, February 21, 2010

A Teddy Bear Baby Shower

This weekend, I had the wonderful opportunity to host a baby shower for a friend of ours expecting her first little one! She and her husband moved to the area in September, and upon meeting them in the middle of October, we started spending regular time with them. Knowing only his parents and having no friends yet, it was easy to get close quickly. The men discuss movie making and special effects and us women discuss pregnancy, child birth, preparing to be a mommy and all sorts of other things related. I was amazed to find that she didn't know anyone willing to talk with her about such things... so I volunteered! I'm looking forward to many more discussions about infancy, breast feeding, and other new mommy topics I've gotten to tackle twice before. Not to mention holding the tiny one when she gets here. What fun it is to step into a mentoring relationship! It's been a great opportunity to begin in my "older woman" rolls.

But somehow I'm off topic already! The baby shower. Yes. They are living in a small one bedroom apartment and have made room in their bedroom for the "baby area". It's a nice purple wall, so I decided to go with purple and teddy bears for the shower theme. It's nice to have a place to start. After seeing Monica's "Car" birthday party theme a month or so ago, I emailed her to learn whether she'd ever done anything with teddy bears. Though she hadn't, she pointed me in a couple directions. I don't think I used any of the ideas I found there, but they started me in the right direction and gave all sorts of inspiration.

First, I borrowed teddy bears from a little girl at church. I think I used 5 or 6 of them, added little purple ribbon accents and stashed them here and there. This one is on the "welcome" table with a pile of envelopes (to be filled in with each guest's name and address, thus making thank you notes easier and giving me a "door prize" drawing at the end, and the name tags. Another was in the bathroom, another on the window sill, and yet another by the TV. More bears later.

I cut out 20 bears and put names of the guests on them. I had hoped for diaper pins to attach at the top, but I settled for safety pins. Sadly, I discovered the morning of the event that I only had 5 in a decent size, so after My Beloved dropped me at the party location to set up, he and the kids headed to the nearby Walmart for those... and, eh hem, the rest of what I forgot.

Another bear... and isn't she the cutest?!? This chair was the perfect welcoming post. It usually sits in the corner, just inside the house (the new grandparent's home), but we moved it to the front porch to hold this little collection of bears. I printed each of the letters of the new baby's name and glued them to more teddy bear cut outs. (I did lots of cutting last week!)

Then there was the food. Though I did all the planning, decorating and dreaming up of the day, I am thankful I had some help in the food department. This lovely looking vegi tray, for instance, was put together by the new mommy's mother in law (whose house we were in).

She also made these lovely little cakes. The best part? They are made with baby food! They were supposed to be carrot cake, but she couldn't find it and went with sweet potatoes... they were yummy and so moist! She also made yummy apple pastry bites. (My Beloved has decided I need to learn how to make those.)

Then there was the cheese tray. I did that... er, My Beloved did it anyway. I was running out of time Saturday morning, so he cut up all the little cheese pieces for me. We then threw them in a bag and put them out on this pretty plate when we arrived. I brought the grapes to accent the cheese plate, but I totally would have just put a bunch on top. The daddy-to-be's sister very artfully placed them on the plate for me.

She did these grapes too. Saturday morning, with the company of Tornado (who put tons of stickers on a paper across the table from me before everyone else was awake), I put these babies together. It wasn't going as I expected (I think I expected them to make bigger circles, but I don't know what I was thinking), but they turned out like cute little mini wraps! I loved it. They looked a little plain on the plate though, so I asked "sister dear" if she would put some grapes on that too... I never would have come up with putting grapes around the edge like that. I love it!

I made dilly bread served with spinach dip (store bought... I ran out of time and was missing an ingredient to make it fresh). Somehow I missed taking a pictures of it, but it was yummy!

And then there's my favorite part! Leave it to me to get all attached to the drink station! I decided early on (after reading a blog post from I have no idea who now... sorry!) to use half pint canning jars instead of paper or plastic cups. They were SO much cuter than purple cups would have been.

And I tied ribbon around the top of each one (20 of them... it took a while). Some combos were lavender and white, some were brown and lavender and others were purple and white.

They were laid out all nice on a lavender gingham cloth with purple and silver Hershey's kisses sprinkled about (you may have noticed those on the food table too). Then there is the punch. I searched high and low online for a purple punch, but wasn't happy with anything. It all focused on grape... either grape soda or grape juice. I was concerned that the grape juice may be too strong for some. I was also concerned about whether or not raspberry sherbet would go with it (and I wanted to float that in the punch because it's purple too.)

Funny thing, not only didn't I get a picture of the punch (not close up anyway), but the raspberry sherbet we ended up with was more pink anyway.

So what did we do about the purple punch? I found some wild berry juice concentrate and planned to mix that with white grape juice concentrate and sprite. Then I left all the frozen punch ingredients at home and had to ask My Beloved to pick up new ones on his Walmart run. And, because it was a different store and they didn't have what we originally bought, he came back with unexpected flavors. I'll share the final recipe later this week!

Overall, I'd say the shower went beautifully. Everyone had a lot of fun. The games were a hit, lots of people came, and the mommy to be seemed genuinely pleased by it all! I so wanted this to be a blessing to her... especially since most of the guests were new to her. What a great chance this was for the ladies in our church to reach out to a new, young mommy!

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At February 22, 2010 at 4:23 PM , Anonymous Ally said...

Very cute!! What a great hostess :)

At February 22, 2010 at 8:30 PM , Blogger Kristin said...

You have such an eye for color and presentation. I guess it is the photographer in you! Everything looks beautiful.

At February 23, 2010 at 10:32 AM , Blogger thehomespunheart said...

Super cute! I love how everything turned out and all the purple touches just made it! Great job!!!


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